Spirit of the Game Time-out

Did you know that according to the Appendix of the WFDF rules of Ultimate you can call a Spirit of the Game Time-out?
Appendix A7 states that a SOTG time-out can be taken:

  • If a team’s captain believes that either or both teams are failing to follow the Spirit of the Game (SOTG), they may call a “Spirit of the Game Time-out.
  • This can only be called after the start of a point and prior to the ensuing pull.
  • During this time-out, neither team may engage in tactical discussions.
  • All team members of both teams will form a “spirit circle” in the middle of the field.
  • The two opposing team captains shall separately discuss all current issues with adherence to SOTG, determine ways to rectify those issues, and then convey the agreement to the spirit circle.
  • SOTG time-outs do not affect, nor are they affected by, the number of time-outs available.

This rule is added to the Championship rules, but TD’s can select to add this to their own rules too.
I think this is very good to stop things from getting out of hand.


Have you ever seen this timeout in action?
What then happened that spirit timeout became necessary?

  • I never saw it happen but I recently played a game in the Costa Brava tournament where this would have been a good thing. Afterward in the Spirit Circle the incident was resolved but it would have been better if it was resolved during the game.

  • I think this is an awesome idea. In the U.S., we don’t even have spirit circles – which is a major flaw in American ultimate, IMO. I once called an “emotional injury” and left the field after a particularly aggregious interaction – if the captains had called a SOTG timeout, I think it would have helped things a lot!

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